Trixie’s podcast about professional artists and eccentrics who have followed their dreams! Listen to it on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, Youtube and here.
An original fairy tale set in an alpine forest. Milk maid Trixie Littlewurst is trapped in servitude to a giant penis-centric Cockoo Clock, where she is obligated to "water" a Garden of Dicks with her own breast milk. When a mysterious beggar women named Wind Tits, flies into the yard (propelled by her saggy old lady boobs) the milk maid is presented with an offer; Wind Tits will grant her her freedom and, in exchange, Trixie must travel to the Forest, brave many dangers and take the crown from the sprawling Titty Clitty Creature, which feeds on the hearts of the hopeful, at which time she will become the Queen of Everything.
Written in collaboration with the ivy league clown Justine Williams, produced by a kick ass all-female team in New York City (see below), with original music by Gato Loco. Inspired by archetypal symbolism pioneers, Carl Jung, Joseph Campbell and Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés. Performed in Baltimore March 2016 at Creative Alliance and New York City April 2016 at the Celebration of Whimsy.
Original production team included:
Co-Producer Sapphire Jones
Production Coordinator Boo Bess
Director and Co-Writer Justine Williams
Creative Direction Jenny C’est Quoi
Art Department Cheeky Lane, Juanita Cardenas, Elena Delgado
Stage Management Cait Lang
Performers and Co-Choreographers Ede Nightcrawler and Georgia Sanford
Stage Hand and “Shadow” Lara Fox
Original Score Gato Loco
Trixie's ingenious "Banana Peel" act won her the title Queen of Burlesque- Miss Exotic World in 2015, the highest honor in the burlesque field. Setting a high standard for innovation, the costume was Trixie's idea with Seattle designer, Danial Webster's, brilliant execution; a collaboration that took 2 years to complete long distance. The rhinestoning was done by Cheeky Cheetah in NYC. Performed to Andre Williams' "Let Me Put It In," the act is now Trixie's signature number and is a glorious illustration of how traditional burlesque tropes, such as stripping out of a gown, can be taken to new creative heights. This piece beautifully shows Trixie's passion for surprise and her masterful use of repetition of theme; finishing with a wild, raw display of powerful female sexuality. The dress has been seen on countless stages ranging from Australian Spiegeltents, to German television, to Taylor Mac's "24 Decade History of Popular Music" in Los Angeles.
Trixie has been practicing yoga since 2002 and teaching since 2004. She views her yoga practice as a skeleton that gives structure and support to the unending, ever-changing process of becoming fully realized human beings. Yoga is a system of ancient practices that unite body, mind, heart and spirit with the energy of the entire Universe, while making us healthy and fit. What’s not to love? Showing up is the hardest part. Temple of Happiness is dedicated to channeling Trixie's evolving spiritual and artistic pursuits into online yoga instruction and products.
Trixie is known for innovation and her approach to creating a traditional, classic burlesque act is no exception. Many classic acts rely heavily on historical recreation, lifting inspiration directly from the past with an emphasis on gowns, gloves and dancing; but Trixie created her Champagne Bubble Act as a way to pay homage to a classic style while putting creativity, personality and circus skill up front. Balancing it all in the right proportion...not too little, not too much. The act won 2nd Runner Up for Miss Exotic World in 2012 and featured a costume designed by NYC's drag-burleque wizard, Garo Sparo. The beading on the leotard was hand done by Trixie herself over a period of 4 months. She performs the act to an instrumental version of "That's Life" and still considers it to be one of her signature numbers.
For seven years Director Kirsten D’Andrea Hollander and crew followed Trixie and Monkey from their base in Baltimore to hone their skills at a New England circus school, to burlesque competitions in Las Vegas, to cities all over the US and England, and finally to a new home in New York City. The film delivers a provocative look at the sacrifices made for one’s passion, the meaning of success and the strength that comes from partnership.
Us, Naked was one of 10 documentaries selected by the IFP Documentary Lab in 2011— a highly immersive mentorship program in NYC supporting first-time feature directors; World Premiere at DOC NYC, an Academy Award qualifying film festival, IFC Center, November 2014; Awarded Best International Feature Length Documentary at the DOCfeed Film Festival 2015, Netherlands; Official Selection LA INDIE Film Festival 2015; Opening feature film for the 2015 TAKE TWO Film Festival, Anthology Film Archives, NYC; Baltimore Premiere, Maryland Institute College of Art 2015; Official Selection San Francisco DocFest 2015; Awarded Best Feature Length Documentary at Coney Island Film Festival, New York 2015; Florida Premiere at the Tropic Cinema in Key West; BurlyCon Feature Screening, Seattle, Washington 2015; Special Mention, SnowDance Film Festival, Landsberg, Germany 2015.
Bored with the limitations of her tail, Trixie’s mermaid takes matters into her own hands by filleting and de-boning herself to reveal a new pair of legs. Overcome with joy, she is finally able to wear her treasured golden high heeled shoes. At the height of her revelry, she discovers her clam shell for the first time and makes pearls of ecstasy burst out of it!
The original tail and bones were commissioned by artist Willie Richardson in Baltimore in 2005. After fish flopping for close to a decade, a new mermaid tail was made by Mr. Gorgeous. The act won Most Innovative and 2nd Runner Up at the 2007 Burlesque Hall of Fame. The video shows the original version of the act, filmed at the Key West Burlesque Festival. The clam shell masturbation ending was added when the act was brought to The Box in 2013, and the music was changed to Baltimore musician, Dan Deacon’s, “Crystal Cat” - with it’s frenetic electronic orgasm of sound, it’s the perfect soundtrack for a legendary sea creature to take agency over her life, break free from limitation and celebrate with wild abandon!
Minge World was the brainchild of cabaret-circus legend Tanya Gagné (Wau Wau Sisters, Big Sky Works). A powerful all-female physical show featuring acrobatics, trapeze, hula hooping, burlesque, song and wild dance numbers. Originally conceived for Fringe World in Perth, Australia, Minge World was a cheeky, sexy, soulful, cosmic offering to the Spiegeltent Goddess in 2015. Through various incarnations between 2014-2017 in Perth and Brooklyn, the troupe was joined by Glitta Supernova, Betty Grumble, Amy Gordon, Julie Atlas Muz and Ekaterina.
A 2012 Residency at Ars Nova Theater produced “All or Nothing”- set in the back alley of a fancy theater with a magical “talking” marquee sign that commented on all of the action. The show opened with two nooses hanging from the ceiling to the sound of “Pagliacci”, and two clowns who can’t even hang themselves successfully. After their botched suicide attempt, they try piece together the events of the past that lead to their biggest fans stealing their act and replacing them in their own show! The struggling stars attempt to get work such busking with a hot dog opera and hold “casting couch” audition for a man who turns out NOT to be the director of the show out before deciding to murder their enemies in a comedic alley brawl (with their foes played by half and half puppets). With blood on their hands, the remorse from their crime drives them apart - they split up the act - each searching their souls for the meaning of life. Of course, they realize they can’t make it without eachother, and reunite to a rousing rendtition of “Cry Me A River,” - bringing the old act into the spotlight once again.
ONE OF THE BEST ACTS OF ALL TIME! A minimalist, character-based, circus-burlesque tribute to the power of love. The legendary act was created in collaboration with The Evil Hate Monkey and was performed to Bonnie Tyler's power ballad, "Total Eclipse of the Heart." This act was loved the world over and was a regularly featured closing act at The Box nightclub in NYC for 8 years.
MUMBO was a hybrid circus-burlesque-theater play that told the tale of Trixie Petite, an animal trainer in a French circus trying to save her act by training a monkey; while a vindictive ringmaster threatens to sell him to the glue factory and stops at nothing to force her to become his wife. Co-written with Bradford Scobie who played Monsieur Dingaling. With live, original score by the psych-mambo band, Gato Loco. Set design by Jared Davis. Costumes by Garo Sparo and Mr. Gorgeous.
Trixie considers this play to be her "circus school thesis" show, as it was created during her 2 years attending New England Center for Circus Arts. Thoroughly researched, Trixie drew inspiration from the powerful, tight bond that elephant trainers have with their elephants in the circus, often living side by side for decades. The research into circus history lead Trixie to discover such amazing, and often tragic, elephant stories such as Jumbo, Modoc, Topsy and the novel, Water for Elephants. Trixie and Monkey incorporated the use of a double stacked trapeze (one trapeze hanging from the bottom of the other), a mini-trampoline designed to be a marching band bass drum, a burlesque flea circus and featured their budding skills in the art of Risley, or foot juggling. The show premiered in Brattleboro, VT at Luminz Studio in February 2009 and then ran for one week at Baltimore Theater Project in March 2009. Mumbo was staged one other time at House of Yes in Brooklyn in 2011.
Trixie wrote and co-starred in four immersive circus-cabaret shows designed to tour Australian festivals, which all feature magical and luminous SPIEGELTENTS! Trixie’s love of circus history made these venues particularly special, as they are each unique, vintage, Belgian-made circus tents built from the late 19th until the early 20th century. They are the jewels in the crown at every Fringe Festival Down Under. The tents are built with wood, stained glass, mirrors and brass; creating an enchanted carousel feeling that is completely intoxicating! From 2012-2016 these shows also earned 3 nominations for Best Cabaret at Fringe World Festival in Perth and 2 nominations in Adelaide.
2012 FLIPPING + STRIPPING
Trixie and Monkey’s first hour long variety show featuring their best material including Total Eclipse, Gypsy Little- the Sexual Psychic, Kama Sutra and the early debut of Trixie’s Banana Peel. Premiered at the Harvest Music Festival and went on to Perth and Adelaide.
2013 VELVET BANANA
A more polished presentation of Flipping and Stripping that also went home to a month long run on Fridays at Slipper Room soon after its grand re-opening after renovation.
2014 BOTTOMS UP
An actual circus theme for the two circus rebels! Audience participation antics included Monkey mixing a martini in this g-string and pouring it down his butt crack into an audience member’s mouth, and multiple chances for them to spank the monkey. Also included Trixie’s flea circus featuring Dita Von Fleas, a flea trained to splash around in a martini glass.
2015 THE TIME IS RIPE
Featuring Trixie and Monkey’s foot balancing fan dance as a bride and groom and Space Monkey with messy and wild audience participation throughout, the show was loosely constructed as a wedding and reception. Nominated for Best Cabaret Show at Perth and Adelaide Fringe Festival.
Before burlesque, Trixie founded Fluid Movement; a non-profit performance troupe in Baltimore that stages synchronized swimming and roller skating shows in public parks. Obsessed with quirkiness and eccentricity, Trixie was on a mission to take the underdog to the mainstream without compromising any of the weirdness. It can’t be overstated what an important incubator the city of Baltimore was for her, a city that embraced John Waters as its patron saint, has a huge art school and in the late 90s-00s was a post-industrial wasteland of unused warehouses and skeezy public parks; every other neighborhood was a ghetto and syphilis and crack were still serious epidemics. Baltimore was a working class, drug-addled underdog city where individuality thrived. You could be as weird as you wanted to be and people accepted you. To her, fresh out of college, this was a land of opportunity!
Trixie studied painting and drawing in a college. On an art history trip to Florence, she remembers having an epiphany that changed her life; “I suddenly understood how art and community couldn’t and shouldn’t be separated. That it was the job of the artist to translate their meaning to the viewer, whereas contemporary art acted like it was up to the viewer to ‘get it.’ I felt the whole lens was skewed, that art should be way more accessible to people than it could be hanging on a gallery wall in some ivory tower. I wanted my art in people’s face, to burst their personal bubble and be lived with. So, I started painting murals and staging performances.” She got to work immediately.
After college, Trixie organized a feminist reading group that met weekly. The group was made of female artists and they talked about how to take their idealistic views into reality, wanting to change expectations of beauty, sexuality and inclusion but from the inside, in a way that was fun and participatory. During this time, Trixie had the idea to make Busby Berkley style synchronized swimming performance with mixed body types and genders, to bring diverse people together in an unexpected setting to share a bonding experience. She wanted the first one to be based on archetypal symbolism and represent the major cycles of life- birth, love, work, play, death, rebirth. Trixie had never staged a show before and enlisted the help of the Creative Alliance to help her work with the park department. It took a year of planning to pull it off and in that year, she also created “Carmen- the Hot Dog Opera” under the name Fluid Movement and performed it at Artscape and the 14 Karat Cabaret. In 1999, the water ballet, Water Shorts! finally premiered in Patterson Park Pool to enthusiastic audiences, over one weekend. While Trixie was a fountain of ideas and ambition, she couldn’t count to music and had never made a dance show before! Luckily she met Valarie Perez Schere who had loads of theater training and a passion for neighborhood revitalization, and Melissa Martens, a dancer, choreographer and museum curator; who were the missing links to helping make Fluid Movement float.
The initial ideas for Fluid Movement were to build collaboration into every aspect, to minimize hierarchical structures within the group and to transform Baltimore resident’s relationship to “dangerous” public spaces, to intentionally cast mixed body types and genders and to make classical themes accessible through humor and creativity. After 4 non-stop years of summer swim shows, fall rollerskating shows and a spring offering, the group was burnt out. They took off for a year to build up the foundation of the organization, recruit and active board of directors, and to establish the group as a non-profit. In year 5-6, Trixie received a prestigious Open Society Institute grant which gave $52,000 of unrestricted funds for her to take Fluid Movement’s mission into new communities and to create a solid infrastructure for the organization to remain strong independent of Trixie’s presence. She believed the sign of a healthy organization would be if it could survive without its founder. She was able to create a system of on-going mentorship of new directors within a practical, symbiotic and collaborative organizational philosophy. Trixie left Fluid Movement to pursue burlesque full time in 2007 and the organization is still going strong today. If you’re ever in Baltimore at the end of July - beginning of August, don’t miss their annual water ballet!
Here is a story NPR’s Weekend Edition did on Fluid Movement’s 2nd water ballet, “Cleopatra: Life on the Nile” which was conceived and directed by Trixie, all staged in Baltimore’s Patterson Park.
Below is a list of the shows Trixie created during those years
1998 Carmen- The Hot Dog Opera
1999 Water Shorts Director, Performer
1999 Poe on Wheels- Masque of the Red Death Costume/Set, Performer
2000 Cleopatra: Life on the Nile Director, Performer
2000 Frankenstein on Wheels Costumes, Performer (Bride of Frankenstein)
2001 Hoe Down in Hades Costumes, Performer (Delaware Art Museum commission)
2001 Cirque de L’Amour Director, Performer
2001 Nessie on Wheels Costumes, Performer
2002 1001 Freudian Nights Assistant Producer
2003 Go-Go Pirate Show Director, Performer (staged on the historic USS Constellation)
2004 BUGS Circus Director (with Living Classrooms Foundation)
2004 Earth, Wind and the Baltimore Fire Assistant Producer
2005 Postcards from the Deep End: The Flurry Family Vacation Producer, Performer
2006 It’s A Wonderful Species Producer, Performer
An alternative beauty pageant celebrating weirdness, creativity and originality, co-produced with Mr. Gorgeous in Baltimore 2012-2016. Contestants competed for the title of QUEEN OF CRABS and cash and prizes. This orgy of oddities was a celebration of Trixie and Mr. Gorgeous’ Baltimore roots, inspired by the quirky charms of Baltimore and, of course, John Waters.
Queen of Crabs Title Holders
2012 Krystal Dangsheskanky
2013 Bunny Viscious
2014 Sunny Sighed
2016 Violet Gray
Much of Trixie’s work is a hybrid of genres, always incorporating burlesque and circus. She attended circus school for 2 years in Vermont at New England Center for Circus Arts and studied partner acrobatics and doubles trapeze. In addition to 13 years with Monkey, Trixie also performed a hand-to-hand act with Mr. Gorgeous for 3 years.
Trixie has been a pioneer and revolutionary force in the world of burlesque, always pushing the envelope with inventive concepts, characters and costumes, with new acts taking about 2 years to develop.
Created as an immersive show, originally titled "The Super Secret Show," it was first staged in the former Load of Fun Studios in Baltimore. The audience was told the location upon the purchase of a ticket and given a password to say at the entry by the trash can in the alley, where upon they were taken to the theater floor via the freight elevator. The show was workshopped for 2-3 years and went on to be performed at the Capital Fringe Festival and Ars' Nova's Alternative New Theater (A.N.T.) Festival and Brattleboro's . Co-written with Bradford Scobie, who played Inspector Blood Pudding. Costumed and choreographed in collaboration with Dr. Lucky. Set design by Jared Davis.
Trixie was part of a duo with The Evil Hate Monkey (Adam Krandle) from 2002-2015. They created a huge body of work, won many awards, went to circus school, appeared on TV and in film, had a documentary made of their lives, got married and got divorced. An epic showbiz story! Here are some of the creative fruits from that partnership.
The premiere year of the Virgin Festival in Baltimore in 2005, Trixie was commissioned to produce the FREAK LOUNGE, a burlesque-sideshow tent featuring 10 hours of entertainment! In subsequent years, the festival moved to Pimlico Race Track, and Trixie made the entertainment was made mobile; featured roving bushes by Annie Howe’s Ambush Theater, Bunny Cops on pink bicycles, a hula hoop corral, VIP stage entertainment with Scotty the Blue Bunny and the culminating year (2007) featured Trixie and Monkey guest starring in Circus Una’s daredevil highwire motorcycle thrill show in which Monkey drove a motorcycle 40’ in the air on a tight wire while Una and Trixie performed on a trapeze hanging beneath it!